Saturday, September 23, 2017

Explore San Diego: 7 Bridges Urban Hike

Only recently have a I heard, much less used, the phrase urban hike.  What makes it a hike rather than just a walk? Because we know I'm not doing any urban running.   

For me it's the element of discovery and exploration with a longer distance than your standard neighborhood walk.    We're looking at an urban setting in a fresh new way.

Last weekend I explored San Diego through the 5.5ish mile 7 Bridges hike through Balboa Park, Bankers Hill, and Hillcrest.     The bridges in Balboa Park were familiar.   I'd also gone on the hunt for the Spruce Street Suspension Bridge last year.    My new favorite after this adventure is now the Vermont Street Bridge.   

Let's go!

This hike starts at Balboa Park on Park Avenue by the Rose Garden and the Cactus Garden.    I love the rose garden because I can enjoy all the flowers without having to do any actual gardening.   

Bridge #1 
Cross Park Avenue and go from the Rose Garden into Balboa Park. 

Bridge #2
After walking through Balboa Park on the Prado, you'll pass the Museum of Man, and then you'll cross the bridge that goes over Highway 163.    It's very dramatic when you're driving under it, but it's hard to capture that when you're walking over it.  

Bridge #3
The First Avenue Bridge 
Fun Fact:  It's the only steel arch bridge in the city 
Views of the harbor to the left and one of the many San Diego city canyons on the right

Bridge #4
Quince Street Bridge

Bridge #5
Spruce Street Suspension Bridge 
This is a fun one!  

Bridge #6
You get some of your fitness between bridges 5 and 6.   Good news, you're strolling along University Ave in Hillcrest and there are no shortages of restaurants and coffee shops if you need to stop.   This is a urban hike - coffee is what we do.   

I had no idea the Vermont Street Bridge existed and now I love it.   It's full inspirational quotes and connects Hillcrest with University Heights.  

Snack Stop
On Sunday the Hillcrest Farmers Market runs from 9a-2pm.     Feeling adventurous, I tried these hot Cheeto spam balls.    This farmers market is great -  good produce, beautiful flowers, and tasty food vendors.  

Bridge #7
The Georgia Street Bridge is currently under construction, so at this point, you have to walk around and imagine that you urban hiked over this last bridge.   

For more fun facts about this hike as well as map, check out this article from the San Diego Reader. 

Looking for other ways to explore San Diego?


(Traveler in the Kitchen is the hungry portion of this blog)

Do you love San Diego?    Where do you go?  

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Sign Spotting: San Diego

The signs of San Diego have been catching my attention since I moved here.

Sometimes it's a neighborhood sign.   
Sometimes it's a restaurant sign.   
Sometimes it's sweet. 
Sometimes it's snarky.    

And sometimes it's a warning that I should stay far away from snakes.

Neighborhood Signs

Inspirational and Entertaining Signs

Spotted:  Little Italy

Spotted:  Little Italy Farmers Market

Spotted:  South Park 

Spotted:  Liberty Station, Point Loma

Rattlesnake Signs
Definitely NOT a sign I came across in Hawaii

Aircraft Carrier Signs
USS Midway 

Only in San Diego Signs

Need your picture with this sign?   It's in North Park. 

Amusements by the beach - that's SanD style right there

I've lived in San Diego just under 14 months.    There is so much exploring to do!   If you have recommendations of what to see, do or restaurants to enjoy, put 'em out there for me.  

If you have a favorite San Diego sign,  share on Facebook or tag @travelerforgood on Instagram. Speaking of Instagram, if you follow there, you'll see more SanD signs.  

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Dallas Weekend of Fun

I went through the Big D and I do mean Dallas!

Previously, my exposure to Dallas had been the DFW airport.   I've been there many times, but never escaped the confines to see what the Dallas Fort Worth area has going on.    One of my friends from Maui, who went on the Big Island road trip with me, transferred there for work.   A perfect call for a weekend adventure in my book.

Being honest with ourselves, there was a lot of eating and drinking going on, along with the touristing.

Here are some of the things you could eat, drink and do during a Dallas Weekend of Fun.  

The Eating and Drinking

Brunch on the patio at Meso Maya

Food truck treats at Klyde Warren Park
(ice cream sandwich from Cool Haus)

Big ass margaritas at Booger Red's Saloon in Old Town, Fort Worth
(we chose not to have the Buffalo Butt Beer)

Deliciously perfect BBQ at Pecan Lodge

Classy custom cocktails at Armoury D.E. 

Fine pies for fine folk at The Emporium

The Touristing

Learning more about our American history at the Sixth Floor Museum 

Getting our wild west on at the Fort Worth Stockyards 
We missed the parade of longhorns, but did ride on a tiny train, so there's that.   

Going on a ghost tour of Fort Worth!

Everything's more haunted in black and white
The most amazing spring day at the Dallas Arboretum

Do you have recommendations of things to enjoy in Dallas?    Where have you gone recently on a weekend adventure?

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

7 Photos of Adorable Sleeping Sea Lions

Adorable Sea Lion Alert!

Sea Lions:  one of the many things I loved about exploring the Galapagos islands in May.

So sit back, relax and take a minute and enjoy these photos.

This one had its own park bench in Puerto Ayora

Best quote from a friend who knows I love to bake
"That's a strange looking sugar cookie"

What adorable sleeping animals do YOU love?   Which sea lion is your favorite?

Other Adventures in Ecuador

Friday, June 2, 2017

Eating in Ecuador

Food is high on my list of vacation experiences.

Whether it's a weekend road trip or a major adventure, I look forward to what I'm going to eat and drink.   Most recently I went to Ecuador, aka major adventure.    Our trip started and ended in Quito and we took a Galapagos Island cruise in the middle.    Galapagos has been on my 'work for it' list (wishing doesn't get you anywhere) and I loved the experience.

I have a quote up in my office that says "First we eat, then we do everything else."   
I'll be sharing more of my Ecuador trip including all the cute sea lions you can handle, but first, let's eat!  

In Ecuador, the bizcochos we had were biscuit-like.   
Our guide had us spread caramel on top and then top it with a piece of cheese for a winning sweet and savory treat.  

I love traveling the world and eating potato chips.  Technically chifles are not potato chips, they are plantain chips, but they are equally salty and delicious.    The picante Doritos packaging makes these chips look fierce and spicy.  In reality, not so much.    

My friend and I were trying to keep track and we were pretty confident that we had plantains, empanadas, coffee and chocolate each day.   The way it should be.    

Ecuadorian fried pork.  
Also pictured, the requisite plantains, and another favorite potato option, the llapingacho.

Blackberry and Soursop Juice
I loved that blackberry options were available (juices, ice cream, and more).   This layered juice was a real treat at El Crater.  In Spanish, the soursop is called guanĂ¡bana.  I have to imagine I can find it here in San Diego as close as I am to the border.      

Potato Soup
So good every time. 

Sea Bass
Bonus when it had passion fruit sauce.

Vacation Coffee
It feels so good.

Ecuadorian Chocolate
Ecuador produces amazing chocolate.  
I loved these turndown chocolates from Hoja Verde on our cruise .

Potato Pancakes

Chocolate Caliente
The real deal.   Hot milk and dark Ecuadorian chocolate.

I went to Peru in 2010 and that started a love affair with ceviche that continues to this day.    

Have you traveled anywhere recently where you've loved the food? 

Where should I go?   What should I eat?  


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